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Does electroconvulsive therapy help schizophrenia?

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Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a procedure in which electrodes are attached to the person's scalp and, while asleep under general anesthesia, a small electric shock is delivered to the brain. Each shock treatment causes a controlled seizure, and a series of treatments over time leads to improvement in mood and thinking. Some researchers think that ECT-induced seizures may affect the release of neurotransmitters in the brain. ECT is sometimes helpful when medications fail or if severe depression or catatonia makes treating schizophrenia difficult.

SOURCES:

National Institute of Mental Health: "Schizophrenia."

MedicineNet.com: "Schizophrenia."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Schizophrenia."

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "Schizophrenia."

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation: "Schizophrenia."

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on January 21, 2020

SOURCES:

National Institute of Mental Health: "Schizophrenia."

MedicineNet.com: "Schizophrenia."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Schizophrenia."

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "Schizophrenia."

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation: "Schizophrenia."

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on January 21, 2020

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